Mackerel & Beetroot Salad

Well this is daunting with 17 posts (photo only, at the moment) in my drafts folder. I’ll probably still be doing this by July! Is it really June? Although I may have lost my mojo it doesn’t stop me from buying new books and I recently purchased Perfect Plates in Five Ingredients by John Whaite. If you are looking for a new cook book I would thoroughly recommend it.

So Hugh uses three, John uses five, Jamie uses too many to count. I might write a cook book – This was Dinner with Four. Four hasn’t been done yet has it?

On 9th May 2016, This was Dinner

Get set…

  • Slice some beetroot
  • Flake some smoked mackerel
  • Toast some hazelnuts
  • Cut up some lettuce
  • Get sour cream, wholegrain mustard & seasoning ready

Throw it together…


Mix the mustard with the sour cream.

Roughly chop the nuts.

Dish it up…

Arrange the lettuce on a plate then add the beetroot and the mackerel. Scatter with the nuts and serve with a dollop of the sour cream. Season to taste.


This recipe is definitely more ‘inspired by’ than ‘taken from’ Perfect Plates. John Whaite’s is far more colourful than mine with his variety of beetroots. Try finding that in a Doncaster Morrisons along with his raspberry vinegar! Mine is definitely a more rugged version 😀

Tuna Caesar with Anchovies & Kale

On 9th April 2016, This was Dinner

Well, behind as usual, what better opportunity to get up to date but a real wash-out of a bank holiday. We didn’t even get to the Tour de Yorkshire as we were going to walk the dog to see it but would have got soaked to the skin. Well done to everyone who braved the rain and made the most of it.

Fresh tuna is not a favourite of mine. This might sound weird but it is a little too meaty and not quite fishy enough for me. However, being the nice person I am, I force myself to put it on the menu sometime as Mr S likes it. After eating this though, I think I might have tuna a little more often.

Get set…

  • Preheat the oven to 160°c (fan)
  • Cut up a ciabatta into large chunks
  • Zest a lemon
  • Roughly chop a few anchovies
  • Finely chop a garlic clove
  • Grate some parmesan and shave a little more for serving
  • Chop some kale, removing the thick stalks first
  • Get tuna steaks, mayo, buttermilk, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, extra virgin olive oil & seasoning ready

Throw it together…

Toss the bread in the oil and pop on a baking tray, cook for around 10 minutes until golden.

Oil the tuna steaks and add half of the lemon zest and season well.

Heat more oil in a pan on a gentle heat and add the anchovies and garlic. Break the anchovies down to form a paste. Transfer to a bowl and add mayo, buttermilk, Dijon, Worcestershire and the grated parmesan. Add the remaining lemon zest and a good squeeze of juice then mix it up to a nice dressing.

Add the kale leaves and stir well. Leave it a while to get the kale nice and softened.

Cook the tuna for around 3 minutes each side and leave ti rest whilst you plate up.

Dish it up…

Place the kale on the centre of the plate, arrange the croutons around then top with the tuna. Add a squeeze of lemon then top with the parmesan shavings.


The original, using cavolo nero which I couldn’t get hold of but Aldi sometimes stock, can be found here, at BBC Good Food.

Chicken Wings Again

On 5th September 2015, This was Dinner

The title sounds like “Oh no! Chicken wings again” but is more like “To round off a great birthday week lets have something we both adore – I know – chicken wings again”. These are THE best wings ever.

With home made oven chips, a couple of beers each and our own homemade and newly titled Atomic Sauce* we were both very happy.

I also made a quick salad of fridge and pantry leftovers.

Here’s my original post, which incidentally, was the night I was sent a photo of a newborn puppy who was to become the centre of our lives.

TWD_0509_Chicken_WingsTWD_0509_Wings_2* A mixture of Sriracha (Mr S fave) and Crucials Hot Chilli Sauce (my fave) and a couple of secret ingredients 😉

Goats Cheese Croûtes with Green Bean Pesto Salad

On 18th February 2015, This was Dinner

I said in a previous post that it’s not always easy to get my hands on sunblush tomatoes. To be honest, for the price of a bag of small tomatoes, in this case plum, it really is worth doing these ‘moonblush’ ones (see Nigella Slater).

To make moonblush tomatoes:

Whack the oven on high. Halve some tomatoes. Place close together on a baking tray and sprinkle with sea salt and caster sugar. Pop a few thyme sprigs on there. Stick them in the oven and immediately turn the oven off. Leave overnight then pop in an airtight container.

Luckily I remembered to do this on Tuesday for this delicious and vibrant salad tonight.


  • Lightly toast some pine nuts
  • Cook some green beans, drain & refresh
  • Slice a small baguette on an angle
  • Cut some firm goats cheese into pieces
  • Get dijon mustard, white wine vinegar, olive oil, green pesto, rocket, moonblush tomatoes & seasoning ready


Mix together dijon mustard and white wine vinegar, slowly add oil whisking continuously. Add a couple of tablespoons of green pesto and season well.

Lightly toast the croûtes on each side then top with the goats cheese and toast again.

Arrange the rocket on a plate and drizzle with the dressing. Add the green beans, tomatoes and pine nuts and drizzle again.

Add the croûtes to the plate and drizzle with a little more of the dressing.

I never knew until recently the green beans are also known as bobby beans, there you go.

TWD_1802_Goats_SaladThe original Delicious Magazine recipe can be found here.

Chorizo & Everything Else Salad

On 29th January 2015, This was Dinner

Before I start, do you check your spam? I do. The organiser in me likes to delete it all permanently. This week it’s thrown a couple of non-spam comments in there. So if, like me, you like to reply to people who comment (and see their comments obviously) then have a quick check!

We had some snow today. I work in Sheffield where these was loads but live in Doncaster where there was not loads. There was a point where I thought ‘I’m going home before I get snowed in’ but it passed.

This is a ‘use anything you have lying around’ type of dinner, brought together by the wonderfulness that is chorizo. I saw someone’s blog the other day which stated their love of chorizo and how it lasted for a couple of meals. I was going to comment but got caught up in something else and can’t think for the life of me who’s blog it was! The reason for me bringing this up is that I always, ALWAYS, use a full one as I love it so much.


  • Cut up some tomatoes
  • Shred some lettuce
  • Roughly chop some chargrilled peppers
  • Roughly chop some olives
  • Cut some bread to ‘crouton sized’
  • Chop up a chorizo
  • Chop some parsley
  • Chop some spring onions
  • Grate some parmesan
  • Get rocket, eggs, lemon, red wine vinegar, oil & seasoning ready


Boil a couple of eggs to ‘just’ hard boiled, pop to one side.

Heat some oil in a pan and throw the bread in, fry and remove.

Cook the chorizo in the pan then remove and drain on kitchen paper.

Make sure the heat is off and add a splash of red wine vinegar and a good squeeze of lemon juice. Season and stir well.

Build your salad however you like and drizzle with the quick dressing.

TWD_2901_Chorizo_SaladA veritable feast of flavours!

Blue Cheese Salad with Walnut Croutons

On 22nd September 2014, This was dinner

Mr S did the market shop alone this week. When requesting some blue cheese from our cheese stall he was told “that’s very strong blue cheese” to which he replied “it’s OK, I’m doing the shopping”


I had to have the tiniest of pieces on my salad as it was far too bloody strong for me! That’s it. He’s not having chicken for a month!


  • Make a lemon & wholegrain mustard dressing
  • Cut some walnut bread into chunks
  • Cut some blue cheese into pieces (very small pieces in my case)
  • Mix natural yoghurt with parsley and seasoning
  • Get baby spinach, rocket, oil & bacon ready


Fry your bacon in a dry pan, pop on some kitchen paper.

Fry the pieces of bread in the bacon fat until golden.

In a bowl put baby spinach and rocket and drizzle with the lemon and mustard dressing.

Add the blue cheese and croutons.

Roughly chop the bacon and add to the salad.

Top with the yoghurt dressing.


Nice but a milder blue cheese for me next time.

Smoked Haddock & Chorizo Salad

How I managed to forget to buy a chorizo is beyond me! I picked one up on the way home


•  Slice a chorizo

•  Cut some stale bread into chunks

•  Shred some lettuce

•  Slice some spring onions

•  Halve some cherry tomatoes

•  Roughly chop & slice some radishes

•  Get out your rocket, smoked haddock, oil & seasoning

To make:

Pop the haddock in a pan and cover with water, on a gentle simmer poach for about 10 minutes depending on the size of your fish. Remove and cut into chunks.

Wipe the pan out and add some oil and heat, season the bread then cook in the pan for a couple of minutes until golden brown.

Cook the chorizo slices in the pan and when almost done add the fish and season. Cook for a couple more minutes then serve with the lettuce, rocket, radish and tomatoes, top with the croutons and spring onions.


The recipe is in the September edition of BBC Good Food.

This was dinner…4th September 2014